Te Araroa Trail – Day 136

Friday March 22, 2024
Distance/ Total: 27.6 km / 17.1 mi

Shaun, Cowboy, and I were up and on the trail about 7:50 this morning. The trail started out as a road walk and about 1 kilometer up the road we ran into a gate. It didn’t show a gate on our map and we were curious why it was fenced off now.

Down the side road a guy came out to talk to us. They were farming deer on the adjacent land and were moving a herd down the road this morning. We asked us to wait by a nearby barn while the herded the deer by. Soon about 60 deer came running down the road, looked at us, and turned the other way. I’ve never seen a deer farm before and that was pretty unusual.

After the deer had passed we continued on down the road. The road continued on up the mountain and entered another forested area. The views were pretty good from the trail and I grabbed a picture on the way up. The trail soon entered the forest and we continued on until the road ended in the woods.

Once on the trail we were in the mud. The trail was muddy, rooted, and climbing uphill. It was slow going as we worked our way up the mountain trying to avoid the deep mud. It took us about 2 hours to climb up to the top of Bald Hill. This hill had antennas on it as well and we were able to walk the service road for the next 4 kilometers.

The trail turned off the service road and once again started climbing uphill through the mud. On the uphill section there were several mud puddles that we were unable to avoid and ended up with mud up to our shins.

The fun really started after we exited the trees onto the higher meadows where we now had mud puddles that came up to mid thighs. We tried avoiding what we could but ended up covered in mud up to the bottom of my shorts.

We reached Martins hut about 7:00pm and headed down to the nearby stream to collect water and wash off the mud. My shoes have rips in them and had filled up with mud. I was able to get my shoes, socks, and gaiters cleaned off, but will have to deal with my shorts tomorrow.

Shaun, Cowboy, and I were able to get bunks in the 4 bunk hut, but 5 others arrived later meaning 4 were trying to make room on the floor. The area outside the hut was as muddy as the trail and not suitable for camping.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *